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Mato Grosso do Sul: Day 2 – Aguas de Bonito to Olho d’Agua, Bonito

26 de April de 2014 | By | Reply More
Pousada Águas de Bonito

Pousada Águas de Bonito

Mato Grosso do Sul is an hour behind Rio time which means it gets dark very early- like around 5.30pm and light equally early at 5.30am. I must admit I wasn’t aware of this before but the cockerels definitely know and they start crowing exactly an hour before sunrise at 4.30am. Of course I wake up as it’s a very different sound from what you get in the city but there’s an upside to this,  I can take photos at the right time of day and still be in time to work looking out over a swimming pool bathed in early morning sunlight.

Pousada Águas de Bonito, Bonito

Pousada Águas de Bonito, Bonito,

Aguas de Bonito calls itself a hotel pousada rather than just hotel or just pousada and this gets me thinking about the difference between the two. Basically a hotel is likely to have more structure (like 24 hour reception and maybe a tourist office) more services available (like laundry and telephone in the room) and more amenities in bathroom like shampoo, crèmes and hairdrier); a pousada is likely to have more charm, individual design and personality and owners who are not only around but enjoy talking to their guests. Aguas de Bonito is a lovely cross between the two and it deservedly wins Tripadvisor’s prize for one of the top places for good service in Brazil .

Fernanda and the ranches cattle horn

Fernanda and the ranches cattle horn

After breakfast I meet with Willian who is in charge of guest relations and marketing and he takes me for a short ride around Bonito (9 blocks or 15 minutes walk away). If I’m honest there is not a lot to see (the attractions of caves and waterfalls etc are mostly well out of town) but we decide to check out the life museum just being set up by Fernanda whose great grandfather was one of the founders of the town. Fernanda gets no support for her project but she is passionate about keeping local culture and life stories alive and gives a session at 9pm every evening for anyone who is interested in attending. I notice the curved berrante (cattle ranches horn) sitting in the corner and she gives us a demonstration of how different sounds are used to direct the vaca gorda (fat cows) and the vaca  magra (thin cows) to pasture. All she manages to do on this occasion however is to attract 3 very fit cyclists who just happen to be passing by and everyone laughs.

Pousada Olho d'Água, Bonito

Pousada Olho d’Água, Bonito

Back in the pousada Willian invites me for lunch of fish in papillotte and nicely chilled white wine in the restaurant so I am well chilled myself by the time I reach my next pousada, Olho d’Agua, 10 minutes drive away.  I get a great reception from Camila the reservations manager here and she tells me about all the refurbishment they’ve been doing, particularly of the pool (which is now all nicely tiled) and the restaurant where the menu is now all “slow food”. Clearly I have to sample them both as one of the necessities of the job and I can now safely approve them both!  It’s very nice to be back in a pousada with loads of space where you feel like you’re in the middle of the country but you’re still only a short drive into Bonito.

Stay tuned for more!

For further information on Brazil Travel and Pousadas visit Hidden Pousadas Brazil



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Category: Mato Grosso do Sul, Mato Grosso do Sul - Where to visit & stay?

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